A Ketogenic diet is one in which your body burns fat for energy instead of burning carbs. This is due to the low carb intake that occurs while on this type of diet. This type of diet is vastly known for its rapid weight loss properties. But like any other diet, you should always consult your primary physician before embarking on any diet program because they do come with a certain level of risk.
The Main Focus
Weight loss and promotion of a healthy lifestyle is the main purpose for the ketogenic diet just like any other. In order to achieve the correct result from this diet one has to reach a metabolic state called ketosis. After restricting the body of carbohydrates for a certain period of time a person’s body will start to break down stored fat deposits. This breaking down of fat creates ketones, a molecule that the body burns for energy to take the place of carbs.
To continue on a ketogenic diet you have to keep your body in the earlier mentioned metabolic state of ketosis for the sustained period of time. To achieve this there is a formula you can follow.
During a Ketogenic diet you really have three main aspects to your diet. These include, fats, protein, and carbs. The goal is not to cut out carbs 100 percent as your body needs a certain amount of carbohydrates to function properly. Carbs are to be 5 percent of your daily intake, protein should be 20 percent, and finally fats should take up the remaining 75 percent of your daily caloric consumption. This eating structure can sometimes be hard to achieve. To help with this I have listed a few foods that are commonly eaten while on the keto diet.
- Healthy Fats – Avocados, nuts and seeds, salmon, coconuts and oil, egg yolks, beef, pork, lamb, dark chocolate, butter and most cheeses.
- Protein – Fish, beef, chicken, pork, eggs, nuts, nut butter, whey protein powder.
- Carbohydrates – Cocoa powder or Dark Chocolate, Low-carb vegetables, berries, avocados, shirataki noodles, olives and cauliflower.
To reiterate, the goal of this diet isn’t to completely eradicate carbs from your body but to lower the intake. My personal suggestion for those who like cauliflower is to eat as much of it as possible. This is a very low carb vegetable that is also very filling and can be used to make great treats such as pizza and cheese break sticks.
Importance of Water Consumption
Carbohydrates retain water and sodium in the body so naturally when you restrict the consumption of carbs your body will start excreting all of this excess water and sodium as it burns off the excess fat. This is usually the first bit of weight lost and depending on your body fat percentage is could be a good chunk of weight lost (as it was in my case.) Regardless of your body type or exercise regimen, you have to replace the water that is being lost and you have to continue to due so even more once your fat stores are gone. It is recommended that adults drink between 91 and 125 fluid ounces of water per day.
When I first started I had a hard time gauging when I was drinking enough water. As a general rule of thumb, if your urine is light yellow or clear you are hydrated and drinking the appropriate amount. If you urine is darker or musty looking, you probably need to drink more.
Tips to Help Drink More
- Carry a refillable, preferably measurable, water bottle with you that can be refilled as you drink.
- Use zero carb and zero calorie flavor enhancers to make it easier to drink.
- Track your drinking through the day (measurable bottle). If you do not have a bottle that makes this easy, when you top your bottle off for the first time, measure out an amount that is easy to consume in 1-2 hours. Make one mark for every one of those units until your bottle is full. If you find this isn’t enough water readjust or just refill and continue consuming on a more frequent basis.
I know this is a forbidden word when it comes to “fad” diets like the Keto diet but I firmly believe that behind every great weight loss story there is a workout regimen that assisted. My line of work helped during my trial with the keto diet. Walking on average of 13 miles a day while on the keto diet resulted in an astonishing 31lbs lost in just under two months. It is the lifeline of every great diet.
There are great side effects to a workout regimen. This can include but are by no means limited to; relieving stress, physically feeling better, getting a mental boost from the increased blood flow to the brain, and to top it all off the chance of getting in great physical shape and having a better outlook on yourself and a better self-esteem because of it.
What is keto about? Now you are hopefully more knowledgeable about the subject and in a better head space about the amount of work and time that you have to put into the meal prep, the water intake, the exercising. I promise without a doubt that if you consult with your doctor and you decide to start the keto diet (and stick to it) that you will not regret it by any means. As I said on my background post, this is to inspire myself as much as it is to inspire you. I want to get back in shape and help others get in shape while I am at it. Let’s help each other. Feel free to comment, leave your name or your email and I will respond to you. I want a community out of this and I want to hear everbody’s stories and experiences involving the keto diet. I will help you out as much as I can here at you Keto information destination.